Loyola’s Intercampus Shuttle schedules are planned to be broadcast campus-wide on televisions soon, but Loyola’s Department of Capital Planning was unable to give an exact date.
Campus televisions currently display upcoming Chicago Transit Authority bus times for the 147 and 151 routes, upcoming Loyola events and the weather. In a new development from Capital Planning, expected shuttle arrival and departure times will now be broadcast on campus televisions.
“The goal is to keep the [passengers] more informed and make their information more readily available,” said Nick Memisovski, manager of Campus Transportation.
The purpose of providing the Loyola shuttle mobile tracking site, LUCBus.com, and adding a tracker to the televisions is to ensure that students have the ability to make well-informed choices about their modes of transportation, said Memisovski and Tim McGuriman, associate vice president of Capital Planning.
MV Transportation became the provider of Loyola’s campus transportation in the 2014-2015 school year. It has since developed new technology and shuttle improvements, such as the latest public-style buses and updated mobile site. The latest addition, broadcasting shuttle times via the Internet, came from a desire to become more technologically advanced, according to McGuriman.
“We’ve always been looking to enhance technology applications and the best way to leverage that,” said McGuriman. “It’s just a desire for ongoing customer improvement.”
These improvements resulted from complaints that students and faculty often have about slow shuttles, delays and inaccurate schedules. McGuriman and Memisovski are taking these concerns into consideration, but they said a lot of the problems with the shuttles are out of their control.
“There’s always a little bit of an uptick in customer service expectations versus reality. Most of the delays we experience in the shuttles are due to traffic,” said McGuriman, with Memisovski citing lane closures and accidents as other possible obstacles for the shuttles.
Shuttle accidents have been a recurring problem this semester.
“We’re disappointed in the start that we had with MV this semester,” said McGuriman. “We want zero accidents, zero incidents … We can’t continue to have ongoing damage and concern with property.”
McGuriman said he and Wayne Magdziarz, senior vice president for Capital Planning, met with officials from MV Transportation earlier in September to discuss prior incidents, but he said they have also been in communication since an incident took place on Sept. 9. No details were provided about said incident.
“Unfortunately we had a couple incidents occur last week,” McGuriman said. “We’ve addressed that again with MV and told them that this is unacceptable and the university just won’t tolerate issues like this continuing.”
He said MV assured them it was putting in additional plans and having discussions with drivers.
“They’re on notice that they’re not meeting our expectations and we’re taking it very seriously,” McGuriman said.
Shuttle inconveniences have led some students to prefer the CTA over campus transportation.
Nicki LoDuca, 19, takes the 147 bus or Red Line but expressed interest in the new shuttle tracking system.
“I think that’s a good idea,” said the sophomore undecided business major. “I [might take the shuttle] if I know what time it’s going to be there.”
Using the CTA, particularly the El, is a viable alternative during periods of heavy traffic, said Memisovski.
For some students, such as 22-year-old senior Vanessa Valadez, adding the shuttle tracker to campus televisions is a long-awaited improvement.
“I think that’s a good idea so people know when it’s going to come, because they used to use those things,” said Valadez, an ad/PR major, referencing the monitors that used to project bus arrival times.
These monitors now hang unused in the basement lounge of the Corboy Law Center.
In addition to easier access to the shuttle schedule, passengers may see new routes on their trips between campuses.
Since Labor Day, campus transportation has been doing a test run on a different route, Memisovski said. As some shuttle riders may have noticed, the buses began taking Sheridan Road rather than Hollywood Avenue on the way back to the Lake Shore Campus from Water Tower Campus in an effort to avoid making hazardous turns.